APeelingLeadershipImprovement SuccessDigital MagazineSeptember 2020
Publisher: MarketAPeel Editor: Shanon PeelDesign: Shannon PeelAPeeling Magazine is published by MarketAPeel939 Homer Street Unit 411 Vancouver, BC V6B 2W6 778-839-0521Copyright 2020 MarketAPeel. All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced into any information retrieval systems without the written permission of MarketAPeel. The publishers are not responsible in whole or part for any errors or omissions in this publication. All opinions and views are those of the writers and not of the publisher.ISSN: TBDPhoto by EyeAPeelWhen we do notMarketAPeelThe Harvest Depends on Everything done before the fruit ripens
Shannon’s Thoughts A year ago I published the rst issue of APeeling. It was 36 pages with 3 articles I ghostwrote along with my own ar-ticles to ll the pages. There were over 200 readers that rst month. Over the last year I’ve pub-lished 9 issues and last month’s issue was over 100 pages with 10 contributors and over 2200 readers. That’s right, in 9 issues, I added another 0 to the reader count. This is the 10th issue and the start of another year for the APeel-ing Magazine. I hope that this time next year I’ll have added another 0 to the readership and have more stories to help people nd the solu-tions they need for life and work I am thankful for everyone who has submitted stories to share the lessons they’ve learned from their lives and work with others. Thank you for supporting me, I will forever be grateful. Those of you who are readers of APeeling are my gems, my dia-monds, and gold. Without you there would have been no growth. Thank you for helping me. My social media followers, es-pecially those who have engaged with my posts are my tribe and I hope I am supporting you as much as you have supported me over the last year. The design of APeeling has gone through a number of changes and I want to continue to make it a better experience for the readers and the contributors. If you have any suggestions, have seen a cool idea elsewhere, or would like to see a certain story told, please send me a note. I have received lots of positive feedback so far and contributors have told me stories about how be-ing in APeeling provided them with new followers, contacts, and poten-tial clients. I love hearing these sto-ries because it makes all the work worth it. If you want to contribute a story, please feel free to send it to adver-tising at marketapeel.agency.The Apple Peels are link buttons.
I made changes to help readers nd the stories they want to read. First Section Each page is the start of an article so you can see if you want to read more of it. At the bottom of each page is a peel to click to go to the full article. Second SectionThis section is two pages listing the contributors and the clients of MarketAPeel who are featured in this issue. Click on the images to go to the appropriate pages.Third SectionThis is where the articles start and you can experience the magazine one page at a time.Click the Peel to go to section oneClick the Peel to go to section TwoClick the Peel to go to section ThreeHow to NavigateAPeeling
Accountability used to be an is-sue for me because I lacked trust in others. I wasn’t able to hold people ac-countable because I never trusted them and if I couldn’t trust them, I couldn’t have the tough conversa-tion to hold them accountable. In-stead, I would say things like, “Can you just get that done for me?” I wouldn’t explain that I needed it done by a certain time and ask if they were able to do it. I didn’t hold people accountable to the task at hand because I didn’t trust they’d stay if I held them to a deadline or a level of excellence. When I had my IT company, we used tickets, which would not be closed on time for one reason or another. Not because people didn’t want to get them done, they wanted to do the work. The problem was, I wasn’t clear about my expectations because I didn’t want to create conict. I g-ured if I created conict, they were What is Accountability?Click the Peel to continue readingby Likky Lavji
As it is with most immigrants, the rst months in Canada were hard for my family. Or at least that is what I am told. I don’t think I ex-perienced any hardship. I think we were relatively fortunate. We rented an apartment in downtown Vancouver on Pendrell Street. My mom, who had trained as a typist in Dar es Salaam, en-rolled in a shorthand course at a local vocational college. With her experience working at a university in Dar es Salaam, and this addition-al training, she hoped to get a job quickly. My brother registered at Lord Roberts Elementary School in Grade 1 and I was sent to Marigold Pre-School. My dad hit the pavement in search of work for the rst time in his life. From time to time, he remi-nisces and describes how very hard this was for him. He did not have the condence to ask for work or to sell himself. He would go from busi-ness to business and walk around Success takes struggleClick the Peel to continue readingby Shakeel Bharmal
Throughout my life, I unwittingly de-ed the odds and achieved what oth-ers believed was impossible for a ruralSouthern Alberta high school drop-out toachieve.At 26, I was the head of a three-bil-lion-dollar organization, which was thecornerstone of what we now call thecloud computing industry.At 32, I was standing at the baseof the World Trade Centers wonderingwhy I was alive when so many peopleweren’t.At 35, I was bankrupt and a hopelessaddict living on the streets of Vancou-ver’s Downtown East side.At 42, I was in a loving relationshipwith a daughter on the way and a lym-phoma cancer diagnosis.At 45, I co-founded a company calledUrtheCast, which endeavored to cre-ate an unabridged view of the world inone-meter video resolution by puttingcameras on International Space Station.Deloitte & Touche called us the mostexciting and important tech-company inCanada that year.In 2001, my life was out of control. Ithought I was in control of everything,but it was just the opposite. I ran a bil-How to do the ImpossibleClick the Peel to continue readingby Cameron Chell
Since the early days of the US response to COVID-19, our kitchen table has been home to a pile of newspapers in various states of or-der. There’s the stack of the week’s papers, the news sometimes too fresh and real to face. There’s the folded assortment of mini cross-words from Page 3 that often serve as a welcome alternative to polite conversation at yet another meal at home. There’s the treasure trove of articles that struck a chord awaiting clipping and gluing into my now beloved Quarantine Journal. Today’s crossword, actually published 6 weeks ago yet still lin-gering in the pile, gives two clues on the power of print to reach and connect with all those customers safe at their own kitchen tables. Eight across - “things stuffed in takeout bags” and one down - “an-swer to the riddle ‘what stays in one corner but travels around the world?’”.Keep a JournalClick the Peel to continue readingby Valentina Bellicova
Is the laptop lifestyle for you? Let’s dig a bit deeper to makesure you are on the right path. This probably goes without saying, but people who choose this lifestyle typically enjoy travel.However, this was the case before early 2020. The vast majority of remote workers have recently been forced into this lifestyle and prob-ably were not offered the luxury of picking the destination. When traveling is again acces-sible, this inherently brings certain pros and cons. It means having a minimalist mindset andnarrowing down what you need for your day-to-day living. You’dbe surprised by how little you need to be happy. Think back tovarious vacations you’ve had throughout your life. Did you packtoo much or not enough? During the very rare times I forgotsomething it was just as easy to buy What is a Digital NomadClick the Peel to continue readingBy Andrew Murdoch
We All are CEOsClick the Peel to continue readingby Anthony Gruppo As the CEO for the Marsh & Mc-Lennan Agency Northeast, and now Marsh Commercial, UK, people of-ten asked me to dene the role of a CEO. They want me to talk in terms of a Chief Executive Ofcer. But I’d rather not because honestly, I don’t know how to dene it or what it really means. I believe that everyone is a CEO I look at it this way, if you can coach yourself and others, can be entrepreneurial in your thinking, and act like an owner, you are a CEO, no matter your job or your title. Nobody wakes up in the morn-ing and thinks, “Let me look at the corporate organizational chart, I only have 4000 spaces to climb to become the CEO.” Not a very mo-tivating thought, is it? Wouldn’t it be more motivating to see yourself as the head of your own company, right now, today? I ask my colleagues to think of themselves as a CEO, because it is how I see them, and it is how I’d
The rst part of writing a novel is guring out what it’s about. The next step is to gure out whom the story is about. Characters tell the story, are the reason people con-nect with it, and want to continue to read it. Whether your story has one character, like Tom Hanks in ‘Cast Away,’ or a group of people, like the gang in ‘Friends,’ success is measured by the emotional con-nection the audience has with the characters. The more authentic the character’s responses, emotions, and actions, the more the reader will connect with the whole story.Whom is #ThatsLife About?Charlie - The Jaded one – The one who is bitter about menRose - The Romantic one – The one who is happily marriedLindsay - The Fun one – The one who parties and has lots of menSophie - The Abused one – The Know Your CharacterClick the Peel to continue readingby Shannon Peel
I thought I’d put together a list of Women Authors. e problem is there are so many I didn’t know who to put on the list and who to leave out. So, I went to Facebook to ask women who their favou-rite female authors were. e list grew fast and it would take a long time to tackle everyone who was mentioned, however, let’s give it a go, shall we? Bronte Sisters, Char-lotte, Emily, and Anne. I chose the sisters be-cause my favourite novel is Jane Eyre. I identied with the character’s in-dependence, strength, and her disconnection to the world around her. I have reread this book so oen I almost know it by heart. Why include all the sisters? ey all wrote books, which inuenced the genre and proved that women could write suc-cessful novels in a male dominated world. Facebook comments:“Charlotte Bronte - Jane Eyre was a classic I loved reading in my academic years” Maya AngelouHer ability to be openReading Lists & AuthorsClick the Peel to continue readingby Peter Goral & Shannon Peel
Are You Overwhelmed by theamount of Content you needto post on Social Media?APeeling members have access to a content library lled with generic evergreen content whichthey can use for their own social media postsFree Access in SeptemberLearn More
This Month’s ContributorsShannon Peel Shakeel BharmalPeter Goral Andrew MurdochValentina Bellicova Anthony GruppoCameron Chell
MarketAPeel ClientsBecome an APeeling Member• Discounts on products,• Access to Content Libraries• Personal Branding Workshops and• promotion in the APeeling Magazine• Learn how to tell your storyClick the Peel to Learn more -Chop and ChiselEat Real Meals All Your Meals AYM KitchensShakeel Bharmal
er, richer, happier. Social Media is a reection of these messages as we try to portray ourselves in the best light possible using the same techniques as professional adver-tisers. Seth Godin said it best when he called Marketers liars, we are in a way, we tell the best stories and spin the worst into appearing bet-ter. We manipulate stats to t our stories and we strategically make our topics t what we believe soci-ety wants. Social media is a study of so-ciety and the individual’s driving needs. Take a moment to study your social media proles, what do they say about your values and goals? Social media is a difcult world to navigate and a business needs a Marketing Manager who under-stands how to analyze the data and create engaging content to tell a brand’s story. The rules keep chang-ing as the industry tries to manage the large amount of content being posted to it. Edit Your Social Media Copy Your brain does funny things when trying to edit recently writ-ten copy, it sees what isn’t there. It knows what you intended to say when you wrote it and reads that intent, instead of what is actually in front of your eyes. Then after a few days, when you reread what you wrote, the errors start jumping up and down while screaming at you. Don’t feel bad, even the best writers in history needed editors. As Hemingway said, the rst draft is shit. There are countless ways to say the same thing. That is the beauty
of the English language, two peo-ple can write about the exact same topic using very different styles, vo-cabulary, and tones. This article has been rewritten over ten times and I still can nd errors in it, can you? If you do please let me know in the comments section. Here are some tips to help you write error free social media con-tent. 1. Find a proof reader - a good one2. Be patient and proof it before you post 3. Take time before you proof your work, a day or two can make a dif-ference4. Use grammar computer pro-grams to help you. Engagement is the Currency of Social Media The hard part is creating content people want to engage with. By an-alysing the reactions people have with your content, you can learn what kind of content you need to be producing.A Couple Problems - There is the content you like to make and the content people like to engage with. You can’t create content that doesn’t t within the parameters of your brand and mar-keting plan, so what do you do?
The best thing you can do is cre-ate the best content you can. Con-tent that reects your brand, rep-utation, and image. Then tell your story to the marketplace to attract those customers who will identify with your product or service. You will have to boost posts and pay for ads to get your message in front of the right eyeballs. The other problem is the lurkers who don’t engage with any con-tent, making it harder to know what is good content and what is bad content. Even if they love what you create, you’ll never know, so you might as well make content that reects who you are.You can’t be everything to everyone, don’t try to be. Be you. Social Media is about People not Tech. Since we communicate on social media with technology and don’t actually see the person we are talking to it can be hard to remember that there is someone on the other side of the screen. This can be seen when people make cruel hurtful comments on stranger’s posts. Comments they would never make to someone’s face in the real world for fear they’d get beat up or slapped down hard. The thing is, you are creating content in hopes that people will read it and not be offended or think you are a troll. Create marketing messages that appeal to people’s emotional needs. Understand why your customers buy your product and create interesting content that explains how you meet their needs and solve their problems.Entertain, Educate, Inform on Social Media Social media is an interactive platform to build a community. It is not a broadcasting station to scream your ad all day long. APeeling in Your InBox MonthlySubscribe Today!
How can you get better results on social media? Consider all the ways you can entertain, communicate, and in-clude others in your business’ story. Think like an informative, educat-ing, entertainer.... Basically, be Bill Nye the Science Guy. Facebook is making it harder for businesses to engage with their followers. It is putting a wall up between the two so that businesses have to pay to get their message in front of their targeted market. The min-ute Facebook went public prots became important and considering the size of their community, they have every right to charge for ad-vertising. Facebook advertising is different. It is better suited to branding than it is to sales or driving trafc off site to your website. The rules keep changing and what worked yesterday will not work today. The amount of noise, competition, and distraction the au-dience is faced with makes it harder than it was ve years ago to get noticed by your fan base. Businesses have to be strategic and constantly aware of how their audience interacts with the content to get the most out of their adver-tising dollars. Testing the market before jumping in with all resourc-es will help businesses get in front of their target markets and ensure
Want Your Own Magazine?MarketAPeel will Design your brand magazine in print or digitalthey get the most out of their bud-get. Anaysing the results and dig-ging deep into the data to under-stand the how your ads and posts are being received, engaged with, and charged is vital to making bet-ter decision on future ads. It has never been easier to get in front of your target market and it has never been so complicated to manage an advertising campaign. You Got to Pay to Play on Social MediaIn the days before everyone and their dog got into content mar-keting and posting on Facebook, social media had the power to do amazing things for a brand. In to-day’s world, you have to pay to play - but before you do you need to understand how Facebook ads work or else you’ll end up spending a lot of money you didn’t need to spend. It’s not good enough to occa-sionally put a look at me ad every once in a while. It takes a strategic plan of action to ensure that you are getting the best ROI possible. Keep the sales ads to a minimum.Social Media is Today’s Word of Mouth Social media and online reviews are the 21st century’s version of word of mouth and are more valu-able because of their reach. Are you asking your customers to write reviews? Are you nding social media en-gagers to follow your business page? Are you engaging with your cus-tomers to be part of the conversa-tion? Don’t fear reviews. Good and bad are opportunities for you to tell your story, show your integrity, and inform about your policies. Let’s say you get a horrible re-view from a client who wasn’t hap-
py with your service. You did ev-erything you could to make them happy, you even gave them the kitchen sink and they still sunk you online. Has this happened to you? It happens to small businesses all the time because some people are jerks. They want to get every-thing for free and have you thank them for the opportunity to serve them. These are the people you don’t want to have as clients, they don’t deserve your service. When I worked in the online review industry I had clients who found themselves in this position and would call me looking for help. The good news was that the review brought them to the table and they could tell their side of the story in a professional manner. It also meant that the business owner could bring all his happy reviews to the table to offset the one bad review. Online reviews are like a scale. Good on one side, bad on the oth-er. As long as you have enough good reviews to offset the bad ones, you’re golden. In fact, your more golden then if all you have are good reviews, because people don’t trust companies with no scars. Reviews and customer com-ments on social media are part of your story. Draw on them to show the marketplace why they should contact you.
Social Media isn’t a Commercials only station I know you are on social media to get people interested in buying your product and service, it can be tempting to post ad, after ad, after ad. Thing is, people don’t like to be sold a product, they don’t want to share advertising with their friends and family, they want to share sto-ries, images, and interesting facts. If you want people on social me-dia to buy your product, you need to build a reputation for being like-able, caring, and trustworthy. Peo-ple want to have a relationship with you before buying from you. Devel-oping a virtual relationship is differ-ent than a real world one, it takes a lot more time, patience, and less sales pitches.Social Mediais a Community... If you approach social media as a place to build community and con-nection rather than a place to sell your wares, you will nd success. As people get to know you, know more about what you do and why you do it, they will start to pay attention and when someone they know needs your services, they will refer you. It can be time consuming, dif-cult, and frustrating, however if you approach social media strategically and create helpful content people will nd interesting, you will meet your goals. Marketing in today’s competitive lled market needs a strategic ap-proach to branding, marketing, and sales.
Submit Your Story to APeelingHow APeeling WorksBenets to YouHow to SubmitMore Information1. Anyone can submit one story free2. Clients of MarketAPeel are in all issues3. APeeling members can submit to 4 issuesPublished in a quality productExposure to APeeling readersPromotion on social mediaBacklinks to your websitesSend a 500 - 1500 word edited story to firstname.lastname@example.org.I do not edit submitted stories at this point in time
We all have a story, a legacy, a memoir. Sites like Ancestry.com give us dates and places but they don’t give us the stories. Ever wonder why your grandpar-ents moved to a different country or how they met? Are you curious about what life was like when your mother was a teenager? Some people want to know about their family stories, their roots, or how they are similar to a member from a previous generation. The sad thing is many of those who came before us took their stories to their graves. The family storytellers share their stories, but it takes less than a generation for those stories to be lost or changed due to embel-lishments and poor memories. To help you get started with put-ting your story down on paper, I’ve created a 7 day challenge. Start preserving your story for your great-grandchildren today.Take the one weekwrite your story challengePreserve Your Story
What is Accountability? According to the Webster’s dic-tionary, accountability means, an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one’s actions. Accountability is when you can trust people to deliver on a project or a commitment when they said they would. The second part of ac-countability is having faith in your-self to deliver on the promises you made so others will trust you. Accountability is what builds trust in our relationships because we are ensuring we take responsi-bility for our promises. We are re-specting others and ensuring they know they can count on us in the future. Accountability is the actions we take when a promise is broken, an excuse is made, or a deadline casually pushed out. Keynote Speaker | Facilitator | ConsultantAPeeling Columnist
We can choose to not hold someone accountable and ignore the issue or we can step up and hold make them answerable by having the hard conversations with them or ourselves. When we do not take responsibility for ensuring our promises are met, we cannot successfully demand others take responsibility for theirs. It starts with us through example and ends with us through communication of ex-pectations. My Story Accountability used to be an is-sue for me because I lacked trust in others. I wasn’t able to hold people ac-countable because if I couldn’t trust them, I couldn’t have the tough conversation to hold them account-able. Instead, I would say things like, “Can you just get that done for me?” I wouldn’t explain that I need-ed it done by a certain time and ask if they were able to do it. I didn’t hold people accountable to the task at hand because I didn’t trust they’d stay if I held them to a deadline or a level of excellence. When I had my IT company, we used tickets, which would not be closed on time for one reason or another. Not because people didn’t want to get them done, they wanted to do the work. The problem was, I wasn’t clear about my expectations because I didn’t want to create con-ict. I gured if I created conict, they were going to leave the com-pany.Accountable to Myself When you are not being ac-countable to yourself, you do not take responsibility for what you promise to do because you don’t
trust the process to get it done. You won’t hold yourself account-able if you have limiting beliefs about yourself, don’t care about your performance, and do not trust yourself to do the job you promised to do. It’s easier to let the deadline pass, to only do the minimum of effort, or to produce at a level of, “Good enough,” than it is to have tough conversations with yourself and those who rely on you. If you don’t do what you said you were going to do, it affects other people who will either have to initiate a difcult conversation with you or do the work themselves. Limiting beliefs like, I’m not good enough will always come into play when we fail to be accountable because if I’m not good enough, I don’t trust the process I set up to get the job done. If I don’t trust the process, how am I going to hold myself accountable? It’s a cycle, which starts when we agree to do something we don’t think we can do because we feel pressured or it’s part of our job and we are scared others will nd out we can’t do it. It is the same rea-son why we don’t start the task and hope it goes away because we be-lieve we can’t gure it out, which will prove we don’t belong in the role, in the relationship, or with the company. We hope it will go away because our manager won’t want to have the hard conversation and will eventually give the task to someone Discover how integrity is getting in the way of success for your organization, your team, and you.Free ebook DownloadClick to Discover
else to complete. There is also the other side of the coin where we want to try lots of different things. We start projects but then they get hard, boring, or something more interesting comes along and squirrel, we’re off on an-other project. People who suffer from shiny object syndrome won’t hold them-selves accountable because they are on to the next shiny thing, which is a better idea than the last one. They make lots of promises and of course, nothing ever gets done. A lot of people, like myself, are a quick start. My Colby index says I will start new projects on an on-going basis because I get bored easily. However, it also says I will nish them. My history shows I’m naturally a great starter, but I’m not as good of a nisher. I have worked hard to hold my-self accountable and ensure I nish what I start and stay focused. I still stray off the road after a shiny ob-ject or two, however, I have a great coach who holds me accountable. He shines the light on those shiny objects to show me that they ar-en’t part of the plan, and they don’t t, they blind me from my goal. He helps me to keep myself account-able and to complete the work I set out to do. Likky Lavji is the Blind Spot Navigator, helping organizations, teams, and indi-viduals discover the blind spots in their livesClick to DiscoverWhat is Your BS?Take the Free BS Assessment to discover Your Blind SpotsClick here
DownloadA Free PDF Copy CreatingMarketAPeel Personal Branding Workbook #1- Your ValuesOur gift to youWe created the Creating MarketAPeel PersonalBranding Workbook to help you discovery your story,dene your personal brand, and design a plan of actionto tell your story to your ideal audience. The workbookis broken into manageable parts to make it easy for youto take the time to invest in your story.Our gift to you is a free download of the rstinstallment in the series - On Values.Click to download
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As it is with most immigrants, the rst months in Canada were hard for my fam-ily. Or at least that is what I am told. I don’t think I experienced any hardship. I think we were relatively fortu-nate. We rented an apart-ment in downtown Vancouver on Pendrell Street. My mom, who had trained as a typist in Dar es Salaam, en-rolled in a shorthand course at a local voca-tional college. With her experience working at a university in Dar es Salaam, and this ad-ditional training, she hoped to get a job quickly. My brother registered at Lord Rob-erts Elementary School in Grade 1 and I was sent to Marigold Pre-School. My dad hit the pavement in search of work for the rst time in his life. From time to time, he reminisc-es and describes how very hard this was for him. He did not have the condence to ask for work or to sell him-self. He would go from business to business and walk around the streets of downtown’s west end in between. Eventually, my dad managed to lever-age his experience in the car business back home to get a job in sales at a used car dealership. The letter he received from the Canadian diplomat in Dar es Salaam came in handy in his interview. The downside was the pay was 100% commission-based. My dad was not success-ful in car sales. While he had been working in business since he was 13 years old, he was not prepared for face-to-face sales in Canada. It seemed to him that his skills and experience did not translate. A very kind co-worker felt bad for my dad and arranged to record a couple of his own sales to my dad’s name. If it was not for him, we would have depleted the little savings that we had brought with us to Canada. One day, after my dad had been on the job for a few months in, this kind man said he wanted to level with him. He told him he didn’t think my dad would survive in the car sales business and urged him to do something else. My dad knew he was right and saw this hard truth telling as another act of kindness. The man offered my dad an option. He knew a guy who knew a guy who had a connection with an oil company. Sounds sus-picious already, I know. There’s No Success without StruggleBy Shakeel Bharmal
This ‘guy’ had an op-portunity to take over an old, boarded-up gas station in Surrey, British Columbia. The guy that knew the guy said that he was look-ing for a partner who would be able to in-vest and help run the business. With the savings mostly intact, and my mom’s blessing, my dad took a leap of faith. Connections were made and, within a couple of weeks, my dad and this stranger, whom I will call “Jim,” were in business to-gether running a Mo-hawk gas station. At the time, Surrey was considered a rural farming community. There was no public transit to get there. The dealership my dad was working at made him a good deal on a jade green Ford Gal-axy 500. It was huge, as were most North American cars sitting on the used car market then. With the OPEC oil embargo of 1973, gas prices jumped 350%. This car had a V8 en-gine. No wonder they gave him a good deal! My dad commuted two hours a day be-cause he didn’t want to uproot us from down-town where my mom was completing her course and had made a few friends. Also, Surrey was not cosmo-politan then and my dad feared it might not be welcoming for im-migrants. The deal with Jim was this. Jim would live with his family in the apartment at the back of the gas station. He and his wife would open and close the station. My dad would drive from downtown and work the middle of the day. Drawing on his bookkeeping back-ground, he would do the daily accounting of sales and purchas-es. Essentially, my dad would run the busi-ness, but Jim would be the front man when it came to dealing with the local bank branch, the Mohawk district
manager and the sup-pliers. The business did not turn much of a prot for several months so we had to spend some of our sav-ings. Fortunately there was still some left. On a few occasions, my dad saw Jim taking cash from the till with-out writing it down. When my dad asked him what it was for, Jim said his wife needed to buy some food for their baby. One day, my dad worked up the courage to confront Jim and say that they needed to establish a process for drawing funds, as well as set a budget for how much they could take out of the business. Jim was dismissive and said that was not necessary and that this was how business was done in Canada. He was patronizing and was playing on my dad’s trusting nature. My dad pushed back and said that, even in Canada, you have to make a prot before you draw money and that they were not yet protable. My dad grew increasingly sus-picious. After a few weeks, my dad got a call from the bank manager at the Newton branch of the Canadian Imperi-al Bank of Commerce (CIBC). The bank man-ager asked him to come and see him lat-er that day but not to tell Jim. This was a sur-prising call. Since the day the papers were signed with the bank to open the account, Jim had always been the one who dealt with the bank. The bank manager told my dad that, after months of excuses and stalling by Jim, CIBC had conrmed that the initial investment he had promised had not
come through. What was more, a credit check the bank had conducted revealed that Jim was essentially bankrupt. Our savings were the only thing keeping the business aoat. So Jim and his fami-ly were living rent free, drawing cash from the till and doing little more than unlocking and locking the doors and pumping some gas. My mom and dad did not know what to do. The bank manag-er suggested that my dad organize a meet-ing with the Mohawk district manager at the bank and the three of them could discuss how to proceed. They met on a Saturday. The bank manager revealed ev-erything that he had learned and my dad, the bank manager and the district manager devised a plan. My dad did not have any credit history, but he present-ed the letter from the Canadian diplomat. With that, and his view of my dad’s character, he granted my dad a small line of cred-it. That line of credit was enough to buy a truckload of gasoline. The Mohawk district manager advanced my dad enough credit to buy some cases of oil and some in-store mer-chandise. Then, the district manager went to the gas station and evict-ed Jim and his family, giving them 1 week to vacate the apartment in the back. He tore up all the contracts and put new agreements in
place with my dad. A week later, my family moved into the suite at the back of the gas station. The process that started with providing excellent service to a Canadian diplomat, followed by govern-ment policy changes in Tanzania and Can-ada, a failed career as a used car salesman, a con man, an incredibly supportive CIBC bank manager and a coura-geous Mohawk district manager had culminat-ed in a completely un-predictable outcome. One year after immi-grating to Canada, my dad was once again a business owner. As I think about this story, the biggest lesson for me is the importance of resilience, perse-verance and faith. This story and this lesson was very helpful when I faced my own career crisis thirty six years later but more on that another time. Through the rest of the 70’s and 80’s, I paid attention as my dad talked about what was going on at the gas station. Various CIBC bank managers and Mohawk district man-agers came and went and I learned how my dad evaluated each one of them. Some were fair, some were not. Some were great teachers, some were students. This was my introduction to effec-tive and ineffective business practices and relationship manage-ment. As I spent summers watching the cash reg-ister and eventually pumping gas, I learned several other busi-ness lessons. I learned about the challenges of nding good em-ployees and the dis-appointment of losing good ones. I learned about incredible cus-tomers and nasty ones. I learned about the im-pact that oil prices and APeeling in Your InBox MonthlySubscribe Today!
the economy had on gasoline prices and the impact gasoline prices had on cash ow and prots. I did not know it at the time but, when I started university, I re-alized how much I had already learned about business. As I have continued to work through my career, in several organizations, as a manager, manage-ment consultant, mar-keting director, general manager, president and chief operating ofcer, I have drawn on the lessons learned through this humble gas station business. In one form or another, I worked in that busi-ness from the age of 4 until the age of 27. Here is a fascinat-ing coincidence and twist of fate. Eighteen years after the kind-ness shown by that CIBC bank manager, my brother started a job as a teller (now called a customer ser-vice representative) at a CIBC Branch in New Westminster, British Columbia. He worked his way up to a branch manager and now, 45 years later, he is a CIBC community vice president. And what was my rst job after univer-sity? I joined Mohawk as a sales coordinator and was promoted to the position of district manager before the company was acquired by Husky and I went to graduate school. I think it is just incred-ible how those early experiences subcon-sciously imprinted to the point that they inuenced my brother’s and my career paths. What is your story? If you were an immi-grant child, and are now in a leadership role, I would love to hear how your early experiences impacted your career. Become an APeeling Member • Discounts on products, • Access to Content Libraries• Personal Branding Workshops and • promotion in the APeeling Magazine.Click the Peel to Learn more -
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How to Do the ImpossibleBy Cameron Chell I don’t believe in impossible because I have overwhelming ev-idence that when we search our stories, we discover inextricable ev-idence that the impossible does not have to exist because we nd ways to overcome anything. All that exists is possible. Throughout my life, I unwittingly deed the odds and achieved what others believed was impossible for a rural Southern Alberta high school drop-out to achieve. At 26, I was the head of a three-billion-dollar organization, which was the cornerstone of what we now call the cloud computing industry. At 32, I was standing at the base of the World Trade Centers wonder-ing why I was alive when so many people weren’t. At 35, I was bankrupt and a hopeless addict living on the streets of Vancouver’s Downtown East side. At 42, I was in a loving relation-ship with a daughter on the way and a lymphoma cancer diagnosis. At 45, I co-founded a company called UrtheCast, which endeav-ored to create an unabridged view of the world in one-meter video resolution by putting cameras on International Space Station. Deloitte & Touche called us the most excit-ing and important tech-company in Canada that year. The Event that Changed my life In 2001, my life was out of con-trol. I thought I was in control of everything, but it was just the oppo-site. I ran a billion-dollar company, I owned jets, and was on the cusp of bigger deals. To gain this level of success, I needed to be in control, to do ev-erything you’re supposed to do to be successful. I was “That Guy”. The guy who was always going to be smarter, better, faster, and at the top of what-ever I did. I’d get up early, run all the strategies, did all the self-help things we need to do to achieve more success, and then something happened to unravel it all. It was the morning of 9/11/01 and I had a meeting at the World Trade Centre. When the plane hit we were in a state of bewilderment, then as events started to unfold,
bewilderment was replaced with chaos. At rst, I didn’t understand what had happened, but I wasn’t all that concerned. My rst thought wasn’t about the people or the situation. My rst thought was: “I have a meeting in Midtown this afternoon and the trafc’s going to be terrible so, I need to cut this meeting short.” That’s how self-centered I was. I didn’t think I was being self-cen-tered. I thought I was being smart. I wasn’t in the moment, I was al-ways thinking of my next move and how to be a step ahead of the game. That’s how you win, by stay-ing focused on the future. Or so I thought. All hell broke loose when the second plane hit. It felt like an earthquake. It didn’t feel real. It wasn’t possible. In fact, it was an absolutely impossible situation. When I got outside, the realiza-tion of what had happened became real and I instantly realized I had no control over what was happening. Here I was, the person who did everything every day to stay one step ahead, to control the situation, the narrative, and my destiny at all times. I was suddenly thrust into a chaotic situation of impossible and possible happening at the same time. There was nothing I could do to move forward, to get ahead, to be certain of my future. If I stepped right or left, some-thing could fall on me and I’d be dead. If I ran straight, I might live, but I didn’t know. If I stood still, I could live, but I didn’t know. At that moment, I realized I was
completely lying to myself. Every day, I felt I had done the things I needed to do to always be one step ahead, yet in that moment, I real-ized none of that mattered. I was not able to predict anything. I could not stay ‘safe’ and everything could end. In the chaos surrounding me people were dying, they were jump-ing to keep from burning, they were running in different directions and I didn’t know which way was going to result in staying alive. At that moment, I learned life is completely out of my control and it was the worst thing I could have discovered about my life. The Aftermath I made my way from downtown into Midtown. The phone service was sporadic and it took awhile but I called who I could to let them know I was ok. When I called California to check on my son, I found out he had taken his rst steps. It was surreal. I should have been dead, yet, I was hearing the most amazing news in the world and I all I wanted to do was get drunk. Up until this point in my life, I was disciplined with my body and my health. I drank in moderation and only socially. I didn’t do drugs and took obsessively good care of myself. That night, I got completely drunk and that was only the start of my problems. Over the next six months, my companies witnessed an unfore-seen downturn as the tech market collapsed. Daily, I witnessed the stock price of my company go down and once again, I realized I was not in control of the outcome. No matter what I did, I could not change the stock market’s .com meltdow. I’d done everything I was sup-
posed to do to be successful, to increase the valuation of the com-pany and create wealth for my investors. Yet, I could do nothing about the .com market correction or the regulations governments were putting into place, which slowed technological advancement for a few years. I was supposed to be success-ful. I’d worked hard. Followed the process and there was nothing I could do, so I drank. Drinking turned into drugs and the drugs turned into harder drugs. I started disappearing for months at a time to get away from the impossible situation I’d found myself in. Whenever I wanted to escape, I’d get on one of my jets and go hide somewhere, I wouldn’t tell anyone where. Eventually, I went broke, completely bankrupt, and ended up on the street in the Downtown East side of Vancouver, Canada’s poorest and drug-lled four blocks. I didn’t have to live there. I had friends who would come pick me up. In fact, they’d hired private in-vestigators to nd me, and forced me into rehab. However each time I’d let them down and return to the street looking for the next high. Eventually, I’d pushed my luck too far. My friends realized they had to allow me to hit rock bottom be-cause I didn’t want to be saved. I’d let them down too many times.The Event that Changed my life While I was living on the streets of Vancouver I offended a local gang because I was still too arro-gant and cocky for my own good. Whenever this gang would nd me, they would beat me up for fun. One day, they beat me so badly, I ended up in the hospital. While ly-ing in my hospital bed, I realized as
long as I stayed on the street they would nd me and the next beating would kill me. I didn’t want to die. When I got out of the hospital, all I had were the dirty clothes I’d gone in with and the spare key to my Jeep, which I’d miraculously managed to keep. During one of my rehab mo-ments a friend bought me the Jeep and for some reason I didn’t sell it for drugs. However, that didn’t stop the gang from taking it from me when they beat me up. Now, I needed it back because it was the only way I had to get out of Vancou-ver. I found the Jeep parked on the street and the spare key still opened the locked door. As I was getting in, I heard a yell from down the street. It was one of the gang members and he was coming to stop me from taking the Jeep back. At that moment - it was crystal clear, if he caught me, I wouldn’t live to the end of the day. I didn’t know how close he was, I didn’t know if he was chasing me, I didn’t know if other people were coming after me. I just drove East. The Aftermath After I left the city of Vancou-ver, I pulled into a Safeway parking lot. I was shaking. I’d gotten away from the gang member, I’d taken my Jeep back, but I was a mess. I needed help and knew nobody was going to give me money. I’d bee wearing the same clothes for weeks. They were cut-up, bloody, dirty, goodness knows what I smelled like. I hadn’t eaten for a couple of days. I had no upper teeth because I had knocked them all out during different seizures and overdoses. I had no money. I was driving a Jeep I couldn’t prove was mine be-cause I had no identication. I had no idea how I was going to repair my life, get clean, get my family back, and get out of bankruptcy. I didn’t know how I was going to live to tomorrow, let alone what to do Become an APeeling Member • Discounts on products, • Access to Content Libraries• Personal Branding Workshops and • promotion in the APeeling Magazine.Click the Peel to Learn more -
Learn From Cam Chellwhen I got there. At that moment I asked myself, “Cam what do you want?” I wanted to be safe. I didn’t want to die. It was the rst time in years I realized I didn’t want to die, at least not by getting beaten to death on the streets of Vancouver. I decided, I wasn’t going to die. That was the only decision I had to make and the next question I asked was, “How do I stay safe?” This is key to understanding how we achieve the impossible. It’s three simple things. In that moment I answered those three simple things to do the impos-sible, live to tomorrow.1. What’s important to me? – To live2. What’s the solution? – I need to get to my brother’s place 3. What can I do right now in this instant to get closer to my broth-er? -- I need to drive East.How do I make that happen? The only answer I could come up with was, I needed to ask for help. Everything in my entire life was about me doing it, me accomplish-ing it, and me being successful on my own. Standing there in the park-ing lot of Safeway, dirty, smelly, and scared, I had to ask for help. I was nally at a place in my life where I had to ask for help and I still had friends willing to help me. I knew the rst thing I needed to do was call my friends and ask for help, so I went around the parking lot asking strangers, “Can I borrow your phone? I need to call and ask somebody for help.” Amazingly, people let me use their phones to make calls. I couldn’t get a hold of some of the people I called. Some who an-swered hung-up when they heard my voice. I couldn’t blame them. Finally, I got my former CFO Blair on the phone. Blair knew my shtick. I’d called him plenty of times lying about needing money for rent
and used the cash to get high in-stead. I’d let him down many times be-fore. Blair’s a smart guy. He could have hung up on me or told me no. But he didn’t. Instead he said, “Cam I’ll do something for you. I’m going to send $12.95. First of all, you need to know the exact number because there’s no way Western Union will give you any money be-cause you have no ID, you smell, you’re ugly, you’re an idiot. So, you need to know the exact amount of money. I don’t want to give you enough money to get yourself in danger, so I’ll send you $12.95. What you do with it is up to you, but when the $12.95 runs out, if you’re still alive, I’ll help you again.” Surprisingly, (After a bunch of cajoling) Western Union did give me the money Blair sent and I put gas in the Jeep. Then I started driving until I was low on gas again and I started looking for another Safeway and did the same thing. It took me ten days to get back to Alberta, to my brother’s place, to safety. A lot of those days I was in the back of the Jeep puking my guts out and wondering what to do next. All I really cared about was be-ing safe, to live, and to get to my brother. To get there I needed to do the next thing to get one step clos-er. I in the moment focusing on the next step, the one right in front of me, that moment - not looking down the road to tomorrow. I could only look at the task right in front of me at today. Once I did one thing, I’d ask, “What do I need to do now to get safe?” Then I’d focus on the next thing. Each step geting me closer to
Share the Storymy goal, my brother, my safe place. Doing the impossible isn’t about doing everything and knowing the whole plan. It is only about doing the next thing. To keep taking steps to move towards what you want, for me it was to be safe at my brother’s place. When I nally made it to my brother’s place, something amazing happened, my arms were around him and his wife and they were literally carrying me into the house. I asked, “Why are you going to help me this time?” My brother respond-ed, “You have ten days clean?” During my escape from Vancouver to his place, I didn’t think about staying cleaning for ten days. I only thought about doing the next thing to get to safety. Against all odds, I had 10 days clean by focusing on the next thing. That is how we accomplish the im-possible. The Lesson I can’t do it on my own. No matter what you do. No mat-ter who you think you are. No mat-ter what, if you think you are doing it on your own, if you think you’re the solitary hero, you will not ac-complish the impossible. Show me any person in history who was successful, and I will show you that the reason they were suc-cessful was because of the people around them. We all need to ask for help and stay focused on the future while being in the moment to do the next thing to get to where we need to be.Turn the page to meet Cameron Chell and discover more about him.APeeling in Your InBoxSubscribe Today!
About Cameron Chell Cameron Chell is considered a ‘serial entrepreneur’ with his rst ventures beginning at age 14 and a trajectory in business that spans more than 25 years. He is the co-founder and CEO of the Business Instincts Group (BIG) and BUILD Impossible. He has launched numerous successful tech start-ups such as Dragany Innovations (CSE: DFLY) (OTCQB: DFLYF), ColdBore Technologies, Raptor Rig, Urthe-cast, KODAKOne and Currency-Works (TSXV and OTCQB: CWRK). His entrepreneurial success is based on principles of clear vision, quantiable results and tireless pur-suit of goals. A sought-after speaker, Chell has addressed audiences of thou-sands in settings around the world. His presentations include speeches at the United Nations, Tony Rob-bins, and TEDx Montreal Women. His talks touch on themes ranging from technology to homelessness as he shares his life experiences of overcoming hurdles and doing “the impossible.”Cameron Chell Gets Schooled
Social Media ChallengeDay OneGo to the “About Me” section of your social media proles. • What does the messaging say about you?• Is all the information current? • Is all the information the same on each platform? If your prole description needs a re-do, now is the time to do it. Start out with what you do.Ex “I tell brand stories on digital platforms.” What makes you unique? Ex “My experience in sales, marketing, writing, and graphic design ensures I understand the whole brand storytelling process from start to nish.” What you can do for people?Ex “When brands and professionals want to tell a cohesive story to their ideal audiences using a multi-media and multi-channel approach, they call me.”Use formal language on linkedIn, be more personable on your personal Facebook, and keep your Twitter description short - with only one main hashtag and a link to your website.Not sure what to do and need help writing your prole description? Post what you have in the forum set up for this challenge to get feedback from others.Join the Challenge
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Why indeed keep a journal? While the list of reasons may be endless, the main reason is that it is a proven personal development process that ne tunes your blue-print in such a way that it brings about improvements in every area of your life. A journal can have a single focus such as developing and tracking the progress of a major (or minor) project, or, it can be as wide reach-ing as a life project. Personal devel-opment can be a potpourri of your daily life’s challenges and victories; it can also be single focused such as losing weight or training to run your rst marathon which when achieved can move you on to jour-naling on another goal, scattered with mini-projects to reach the fen-ceposts along the way. Just like a journey to a far off destination you will nd that along the way there is plenty to marvel at, to soak in and expand your thinking, your knowl-edge, your understanding of life, beauty and the essence of nature and who we are. BUT, to achieve any of the above, a new blueprint needs to be created to replace the one you have now, the one that is run by the imprint that was formed by the time you were seven. Well, create may not be the right word. Create suggests that out of thin air a new blueprint can be drawn just like an architect does with each new proj-ect. You can’t just toss away the one you have and voila! Just like that have a new blueprint. This is the part that is your life’s journey. First, you need to know that your blueprint is not all that bad,, it’s just that its our human nature to focus on things that are not good because that is the pain that keeps happiness at bay. There is denitely a lot of good and you want to not only preserve the good, but to improve on it, make it stronger. One small change to your blue-print can have a massive spin off that can change your life. Before I had even started journaling, I had decided to make one small change in my life. To get t again. I had always been physically active, but Why Keep AJournal?By Valintina Ballicova
work, raising a family, yada yada yada (pick an excuse of your own) took its toll on me and I denitely needed to shed some LB’s.Undoubtedly you have heard the saying “Life is a marathon not a sprint.” While that may be true, I can tell you that life is both. Using the same analogy of a marathon and sprint let me tell you a short story about how Nina - yes that Nina, the one who introduced me to journaling, the one who trained us, “the gruesome foursome” to run a marathon. Nina was a rm believer in mix-ing things up, of cross training be-fore I ever heard of the term. Bit by bit we noticed that we were spend-ing more time outdoors. Some-times it was just a short warm up at the gym then out we went. A short run to a nearby park, where we “played” on the monkey bars, tried chin-ups on the pull up bars, and holy guacamole! Learned to use the parallel bars. The nearby beach served well for squats and lats. The town where exercised was on a peninsula with a steep drop to the beach. Sometimes we would run on a trail down the hill but more often it was down a series of steep steps. First a leisurely walk up, then faster, then run up. She even had us walk up the steep in-clines and steps backward. But there was always a run. Sometimes a short one, sometimes a long one. The short ones became increasingly faster, then sprints that left us gasping. The long runs be-came longer. Of course we grumbled, but se-
cretly we loved the slimming of our bodies, the strengthening of our legs and arms, the disappearance of our mufn tops, and I noticed that our postures improved, that we walked with a more condent and even an authoritative gait. All that from that one small decision. One morning after the workout Nina pulled a fast one on us. As had become our routine we were enjoying coffee and munch-ies at the local café, when Nina pulled out some forms out of her bag, and spoke (paraphrased):“Hey guys (everyone was “guys” in those days), I got some paper-work I’d like you to ll out. Next month is the rst half-marathon of the year, it’s a great warm up for the many marathons that are held throughout the year. So these are the registration forms for that half-marathon …”Learn MoreGorgeous Handmade Leather JournalsAPeeling Readers Leather Journal25% Discount Code: BookAPeelDiscount is for the purchase of any handmade leather journal on the MarketAPeel site.
We were stunned. After an initial moment of silence a chorus went up …“What? Are you nuts!” “Not on your life!” “Yeah. Right.” Our protests were met with that rm look and resolve I had come to know that she was serious. She gave us one reply:“You have already run the half-mar-athon several times. And we still have a month to practice more” That sly fox! Before we left the café Nina had four signed registration forms for the February Half Marathon. Bin-go! Would have never done this if it wasn’t for that one small decision to get t. To achieve life’s sprints and milestones, small incremental steps must be taken.Think about a ship and the ship’s captain. When the ship sets sail it has a destination. To get to that destination the captain has to make small changes in the direction that his ship faces. Say the ship is sailing from New York and its destination is Tokyo. To reach that destination the captain will need to make small but constant steering changes, rst southbound to the Caribbean, then westbound to Panama, then cross-ing the narrow Panama Canal, then north up the Pacic with incremen-tal changes towards the west. Sometimes those incremental changes are as small as just one de-gree to the left, or to the right.What if that ship was called “My Life?” What if all it ever sailed was between New York and Miami. And what if you were the captain?One day as you dock the ship in Miami, you look out on to the hori-zon. In the distance turquoise wa-ters blend with the blue of sky. The scene that nature has laid out for you is seductive, it holds promises of something. What? You do not know.
In your heart you yearn for more than just New York to Miami. You yearn to explore. In the morning, you change your course. Your journal is that ship. You are its captain. One difference: your ship is now called “My Journal” and it gives you safe haven to make small incremental changes to your blueprint. It is the place where you can, and should be, unabashedly honest. There is no shame or em-barrassment when you pour out your heart and soul onto the pages of your journal. And, to truly im-prove that blueprint, that is what needs to happen. You will never be able to move forward if you do not identify the things that are holding you back.Have you ever laid in bed at night with your brain just running at full speed? You mull over thoughts and then out of the blue, Eureka! You have had an epiphany and it sud-denly feel as if a massive weight has been lifted off your shoulders. You feel free! You feel as if you have cast off a yoke that has kept you down forever. Suddenly you feel excited, lled with exuberance and looking forward to the day.Journaling is a way for you to reach those moments without los-ing sleep! You won’t have to worry about lying awake in bed until the wee hours of the morning, because you already worked it all out in your journal. Simply by writing in your jour-nal, new neural pathways have been created in your brain. Writing engages the analytical left side of our brain, leaving the creative right side to come up with solutions. In this way the brain becomes aware of what you want to achieve, where you want to go and will actively Get the bookfrom AmazonClick the peel
seek solutions. In your daily journal write down the solutions that come to mind. In the light of day you can engage your logical powers to evaluate them. Choose one, apply, and see what happens. Is the new tactic taking you closer to what you want to achieve? If yes, continue; if no, re-evaluate, correct course and continue. As you saw in the sample journal entry in the previous chapter Jane, the journal writer, refers to some-thing that happened when she was a little girl. We are who we are today because of our early years’ environment, experiences, and our reactions, thoughts and feelings associated with those experiences.The blueprint for who we are today was deeply ingrained in our psyche by the time we were seven years old. Our parents, teachers, friends, home life, where we lived, culture and belief systems that we were exposed to all helped design a blueprint for our life. Even our reac-tions to events in our lives continue to play a critical role in how we live our lives. Two people may be in the same place at the same moment and have the same experience, but how they react to that experience will be different. Think of the classic exam-ple of twins born into poverty. Their parents worked hard at making a living but were only managing to bring in meager earnings. As chil-dren the twins often went to bed without food. They witnessed loud and sometimes violent ghtsbetween their parents. Their father turned to crime and was eventually sent off to jail. This was life as they knew it. Many years later, one of the Available at MarketAPeel.agencyCustom Design Service for your branding needsClick the Apple Peel to view
twins found himself in a courtroom in front of a judge. Sadly, he mir-rored the life of his father. Sitting in the courtroom was his twin broth-er. He on the other hand had tak-en a different road. He was now a prosperous and upstanding citizen admired by many. He married and provided well for his family. A reporter covering the trial was curious. Two brothers, with exactly the same upbringing yet, one fell victim to his childhood, the other rose above it. What was the differ-ence? He decided to pose a ques-tion to each of the twins: to what events in their life did each ascribe their current situation?One twin replied: I grew up in abject poverty. Food was scarce. Our parents fought a lot, mostly about money. My father eventually abandoned us. It was hard for our mother. What choice did I have but to follow the only life I knew how to live.And the other one said: I grew up in abject poverty. Food was scarce. Our parents fought a lot, mostly about money. My father eventually abandoned us. It was hard for our mother. What choice did I have but to look at my life and seeing that I was at the bottom of the pit, I realized that I had no place to go but up. Journaling gives you the oppor-tunity to x some of the areas in your blueprint that may be holding you back. When you write in your journal, be brutally honest with
yourself. In fact, you have to be in order to really understand what is going on. When you lay it all out on paper, it is somehow much more real. It is there for you to an-alyze and determine what part of the blueprint isn’t working for you. What link do you want to change? Once you identify the problem, it is easier to x it. When you take your car to the mechanic shop, don’t they ask you what the problem is? If you don’t know what it is, they hook it up to a device that checks under the hood to identify the problem. From there, they can x it. It’s the same with your brain. Once you identify the problem it is easier for you to x it. Your brain has been imprinted with memories, feelings and emotions that need to be examined before they can be repaired. Word of caution. Unlike a me-chanical shop that can x all the problems with your car with one appointment, journaling can’t do that. Work on just one or two things you want to change or improve on. Your life blueprint is deeply in-grained in your psyche, lives in your subconscious self and is the engine that drives your life. What you will nd is that as you begin to redesign your blueprint, even with just one or two items, the improvement will have a positive impact on all areas of your life. It may be small and subtle, or it may be a sudden gargantuan mental shift. Either way it’s all good. Keep on keeping.Valentina inspire entrepreneurs who have a desire to write, to share their knowledge and experiences, to enter-tain, and educate.Get the bookfrom AmazonClick the peel
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Wikipedia denes a Digital Nomad as the following: “A type of people who use tele-communications technologies to earn a living and, more generally,conduct their life in a nomadic manner. Such workers often workremotely from foreign countries, coffee shops, public libraries, co-working spaces, or recreational ve-hicles. This is often accomplishedthrough the use of devices that have wireless Internet capabili-ties such as smartphones or mo-bile hotspots. Successful digital nomads typically have a nancial cushion. The digital nomad com-munity has had various events es-tablished to host members of it. Common types of digital nomads include retired or semi-retired persons (including snowbirds), in-dependently wealthy or entrepre-neurs, and (often younger) remote workers. People typically become digital nomads for positive reasons, such as nancial independence and a career that allows for locationindependence. This sort of lifestyle may present challenges such as maintaining international health insurance with coverage globally, abiding by different local laws and sometimes obtaining work visas, and maintaining long-distance rela-tionships with friendsand family back home.”Is the laptop lifestyle for you? Let’s dig a bit deeper to makesure you are on the right path. This probably goes without saying, but people who choose this lifestyle typically enjoy travel.However, this was the case before early 2020. The vast majority of remote workers have recently been forced into this lifestyle and prob-ably were not offered the luxury of picking the destination. When traveling is again acces-sible, this inherently brings certain pros and cons. It means having a minimalist mindset andnarrowing down what you need for your day-to-day living. You’dbe surprised by how little you need What is a Digital Nomad?By Andrew Murdock
to be happy. Think back tovarious vacations you’ve had throughout your life. Did you packtoo much or not enough? During the very rare times I forgotsomething it was just as easy to buy the item. For me, it’s far more likely that I overpacked. Trust me when I say that traveling with less is a bless-ing, whether due to lugging heavy baggage or the exceedingly com-mon airline fees for extra and over-weight bags. Do you really want to be that person holding up the line at the airport while you moveitems from one bag to another? I’m sure it gives everyone a goodlaugh until it’s their turn to have a bunch of strangers eyeing upwhat they have in their luggage! Plus, depending on how youhandle your accommodations, you won’t need to bring that much.More on that later in Chapter 3. One item you won’t get away with leaving behind is yourlaptop. Although, some can make do with a mobile cell phone ortablet. These circumstances are rare, and for the purposes of thisbook, I will assume you already have a laptop. If not, keep your eyeopen for deals around holidays, liq-uidation sales, or even purchasesomething second-hand on a site like Craigslist. If you are on abudget, you can usually locate a good refurbished model too. The
type of remote work you will be doing dictates what type of device you will use. On that note, a good purchase is a universal power converter. A digital nomad is nothing without power. We don’t require much, but power is our heartbeat. You may also require special equipment like an external mic, cameras, lighting, tripods, etc. But please keep this to a minimum. A stack of books on a chair is tripod enough. You may nd adequate wi hotspots in public places like coffeeshops, public libraries, co-working spaces, airports, and malls.However, internet speeds may not be the best since you aresharing the broadband with numer-ous others. Something else toconsider is that public (free or oth-erwise) wi is not the mostsecure. There’s always a lot of talk about which devices are safer and have better privacy. Sorry to break it to ya, but Facebook and social media aren’t the only concerns around data protection. If you use public wi, you are exposed. If this is a concern, accessing your own pass-word-protected wi in a recreation-al vehicle, Airbnb, house sit, or a mobile hotspot device is preferred. It’s always a good idea to have a backup plan. If electricity is the digital nomad and remote worker’s heartbeat, then the internet is ourlifeblood! Nobody has achieved a single thing without the help of someone else. Stepping into a new remote lifestyle will take effort and a steep learning curve. You can collapse this learning curve if you surround yourself with other like-minded people. Join Facebook groups, Telegram chats, meetups, webinars, and seminars. Do a search for these three terms and you will naturally nd aconversation that will feel right:
Digital Nomad, Remote Worker,and Laptop Lifestyle. Telegram is a chat app and you can join the Digital Nomad Jour-ney chat here. There are dozens of Facebook groups for digital nomads. There are far too many groups to mention in this book. People tend to nd the most value in the Group pages that arefocused on the part of the world they wish to travel to or are already located. A simple search and you will nd what you are looking for. For example, Bali Digital Nomads is a Facebook Group that provides Bali localized knowledge. Not a fan of Telegram or Face-book? No problem. This LinkedIn Group called TRT Remote Work & Travel Community Worldwide is full of remote professionals. But a small warning. Do not, I repeat, do not join a community and start de-manding answers! The law of reci-procity is a very real thing. Try your best to contribute to the conversation and bring value to the group. People will be more willing to help you out if you start things off on the right foot. Plug-ging into the right network will get you access to resources, and you might even nd employment andbusiness opportunities as well. As they say, birds of a feather ocktogether. Be with your people and you will make more progress ina shorter period of time. I cannot stress this enough. Do not takeadvice about the laptop lifestyle from someone who has notlived it. “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”- Mark TwainWhen I was growing up, I used to think traveling the world andliving that exotic lifestyle was only for older retired and/or semiretiredpeople. Perhaps, at that time, I was
right. The digital revolutionwasn’t here yet. But these days, the internet has made the world smaller and more accessible. Op-portunities to explore new parts of the globe are no longer out of reach. You no longer have to wait for retirement. The laptop lifestyle isn’t reserved for independently wealthy or successful entrepre-neurs. True, the transition may be easier for those who are better off. You may already have a digital job and never considered packing a bag and booking a oneway ight. Or perhaps your current profession is already location dependent? You could be a janitor making minimum wage or a high-earning investment banker. Either way, you are still “stuck”in a particular location. That de-mands you clearing some time inyour calendar to develop a new skill set that can be used in adigital and remote way. Find a way to solve a problem, create value, or reduce risk and you WILL be compensated for that skillset. Ideally, it will be something you are already familiar with or have an interest in. But if you are starting out, I’d suggest picking something easy and locking in a quick win. We will discuss your options in Chapter 2.How I Became a Digital Nomad The reasons for seeking a laptop lifestyle are different for everyone. I found myself newly divorced and sleeping on an air mattress in a friend of a friend’s spare bedroom. I was drowning in my own debt Get the bookfrom AmazonClick the peel
Sanitize Hard Surfaceswith an added ve gures that my ex left on my credit card. I felt like the world’s biggest loser. A failed marriage coupled with a mountain of debt that was overwhelming. I was choking on my situation and sick to my stomach because I hadcreated that crippling situation. I had a choice. I could bitch andmoan or I could take control. It was a painful and expensive lesson: you will never control someone else’s actions. Complaining about some-one else saying or doing some-thing is like complaining about the weather. You are wasting your time and breath. I knew the only way I had a shot at improving my nancial mess was to increase income and/or reduce expenses. So, I got off that air mat-tress, and I took action. I got rid ofalmost all my belongings, including selling my car. I studied my digital nomad options and realized that I could live on a fraction of what my expenses were in my hometown of Vancouver, Canada. Not a big surprise since Vancouver is widely known to be a very expensive loca-tion. I share all of this because nan-cial independence is a very REAL possibility when choosing thelaptop lifestyle. I shudder to think where my life would be had I not taken action when I did. I doubt that I’d still be on an air mattress, but I would not have realized such a profound sense of freedom. I certainly would have been much worse off when the pandemic and associated economic downturn hit in early 2020. Some of my loved ones were concerned about my life choices and worried that I was taking on too much risk. It is clear to me nowthat I have reduced my risk in a meaningful way, and I hope thesame for you. Life can be unpredictable, and it’s only prudent of us to hope for the best but plan for the worst. Tony Robbins likes to say, “Antici-pation is the ultimate power. Losers
react; leaders anticipate.” Have you thought of a plan or how you would “react” if you were to get sick or injured while living remotely? Financial protection might not be the sexiest topic, but it’s a necessary one. A last minute ight back home and an unexpect-ed hospital bill in a foreign country have the reputation of causing last-ing negative consequences. Insurance is a dirty word in some circles. But a policy is far cheap-er ten years too early rather than one minute too late. There are a number of nancial institutions and products in the marketplace today who cater to digital nomads such as Safety Wing. Please research your options as the specics exceed thegoals of this book. However, some points to consider and chat with your Agent about are:How does this policy complement/supplement my employer policy or national health coverage?How long is the elimination period? (This is the period of time you must wait BEFORE you receive your ben-ets. Typical Disability coverage has a 90-day elimination period which would cause severe nancial harm to most people. Data shows us that 88% of the time you are recovered before this period expires.)What are the exclusions? (Reasons you would not receive your ben-ets. You want to make sure what you are and are not covered for!
An example might be scuba diving activities.) Have your agent explain what the process of submitting a claim looks like, and ask if they are able to assist with that. This might be a complicated process, and keep inmind that if you are dealing with an illness or injury, the simplest task might feel difcult and overwhelm-ing. Clarify if your coverage is world-wide or restricted to certain parts of the world. Starting out as a new digital nomad, you can lower your nancial risk if you have some sav-ings built up, already secured reli-able remote income, and/or have the added benet of sharing thislifestyle with a partner. If one of you falls on hard times, the other would be in a better position to carry theburden until good health returns. Obeying local laws and obtain-ing work visas can certainly bean issue but goes beyond the scope of this book since it’s heavilydependent on where you currently claim residency and where youplan on traveling. This requires some good old-fashioned Googlesearches to start. Depending on the complexity and your goals, itmight also make sense to speak and hire an expert. There areadvanced tax strategies and Spe-Click to DiscoverWant To Listen to APeeling?APeeling Members have access to APeeling in Audio les to download and listen on the go
cialists that can assist you. It alsomight make sense for you to ac-quire residency elsewhere or evenget dual citizenship. I’d suggest keeping the com-plexity low if you are only consid-ering this lifestyle change for the rst time. After a year or two, you will have a better understanding of your needs and who to speak with regarding legal or tax matters. On that note, I can suggest Nomad Capitalist for further details. Theyspecialize in helping six and seven gure entrepreneurs and investors. Until traveling is once again available, now is a great time to start the process of getting an addi-tional passport, opening a foreign bank account, and learning about the benets of each. “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”--Chinese proverb Maintaining relationships with friends and family can be challeng-ing, especially if they do not sup-port your lifestyle choices. Mymom was not very happy with my decision to live and work remotely. I know that she had good inten-tions and my best interests at heart, wanting the best for me. However, there is a lot to be said about the law of attraction. You will natural-ly attract those you are “like” and repel those you are not. To avoid
losing touch with those who are important to you, please consider creating calendar reminders. Per-haps every second week or month even. This calendarization will set you up for success, and I’m sure yourloved ones will appreciate hearing from you on a regular basis. What’s the point of having all of these amazing adventures around the world if you have no one with whom you can share? You might even inspire them to make some changes in their ownlife so that they can become re-mote workers. Recent events haveforced many people to become comfortable with facetime andvirtual communication in order to stay connected during times ofsocial distancing and self-isolation. If you’ve ever wondered if digi-tal nomads are legitimate, my hope is that by now the answer is fairly clear. There are many reasons why so many people feel pulled towards this way of life. Have you ever met someone who regretted traveling? I haven’t.There is so much to be gained by exploring this beautiful planet and the people on it. It seems crazy to me to put that experience off for a few decades. There is no need for that. Keep reading!Get the bookfrom AmazonClick the peel
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Everyone is A CEOby Anthony Gruppo As the CEO for the Marsh & Mc-Lennan Agency Northeast, and now Marsh Commercial, UK, people of-ten asked me to dene the role of a CEO. They want me to talk in terms of a Chief Executive Ofcer. But I’d rather not because honestly, I don’t know how to dene it or what it really means.I believe that everyone is a CEO I look at it this way, if you can coach yourself and others, can be entrepreneurial in your thinking, and act like an owner, you are a CEO, no matter your job or your title. Nobody wakes up in the morn-ing and thinks, “Let me look at the corporate organizational chart, I only have 4000 spaces to climb to become the CEO.” Not a very mo-tivating thought, is it? Wouldn’t it be more motivating to see yourself as the head of your own company, right now, today? I ask my colleagues to think of themselves as a CEO, because it is how I see them, and it is how I’d like you to see yourself. Imagine how different, how productive, how animated, how energetic you could be if your title, right now, was a CEO. Imagine if we thought and acted like the CEO of our position in our family, our life, our business and our community? Imagine all of us thinking and acting like owners of everything we do and how great we all could be together instead of working in silos or limited by our cubicles and titles. Greatness is... Think about how many times you have heard the word ‘Great.’ Great athlete. Great businessper-son. Great celebrity. What does that mean? How do you dene greatness? Are we great when we hit ev-ery benchmark, every goal, every objective? Does the eight-year-old with straight A’s come home and say, “I’m Great,” and his parents say, “Yep, you are Great, you have made it, and now you are done?” Or is the CEO Great once they’ve hit their forecast for that quarter? Or they’ve hit their annual goals? Are they Great then? I don’t think hitting benchmarks is Greatness. Perhaps the pinnacle of Great-
ness is when people duplicate what we did and continue what we started. Maybe then we are Great. I think that’s a better denition. When my father, who was a role model passed away from ALS, he asked me to duplicate what he started so it could continue for” “the family. He’d built a supportive family dynamic and I was honored to continue his legacy as a leader who helped others. Are you improving the quality of life for your family and loved ones? Are you improving the quality of life for the people whom you work with and serve? Are people happy to come into an environment where you lead, or do they feel it’s some-thing they have to do to earn com-pensation? Success will never be achieved until people seek to duplicate what you started.Are You in your Own Way? Long before becoming the CEO of the Marsh & McLennan Agen-cy in the Northeast, I sometimes struggled with focus, discipline, and all the issues many of us en-counter. But I knew I had to do more than change my job title to obtain the life I wanted for myself. I had to ask myself some hard questions and nd the courage to answer them honestly because ly-ing was not going to help me move in the right direction. I developed a Personal Strategic Plan to help me discover the answers. When you match your goals to what you’re trying to do in your life, your profession, and your job, hap-piness will ensue.
Are your Goals Equal to your Potential? Often times, we struggle with welding our passion to our poten-tial to increase our performance. As you dene your short and long-term goals, think about welding them to your potential. In the past, I used overview goals to formulate my mission, to be a welcome leader in any arena I chose to stand in. As time went on, I realized in my life, both personally and professionally, the goals had to be more specic. For a dream to become a goal you need to write it down, give yourself a deadline, and outline a metric you will use to measure your success.Dreams are Goals with Deadlines The goal process should nev-er be taken lightly; it is not one of those measures that becomes com-monplace. Cheating on your goal is similar to robbing your heritage and desecrating the foundation of the overachiever who came before you. Leaders are not like everyone else who plays the game. Leaders are the creators and visionaries of the goals of others. If we take our goals lightly, we short arm the fu-ture for those whom we lead. Every moment we fail to support each other and second-guess our achievement, we prevent the sur-vival and success of the system. No matter where we go, goals follow us and bang loudly on our souls. In the end, it was never the goals that drove us; it was always the need, desire, and courage to conquer them. To take them lightly is to as-sume we were never here at all.Goals create the future of an or-ganization and the well-being of a family. We cannot count on some-one else to deliver our future and dream our dreams for us. We can set examples for our families and all those who follow in our steps. We
have no right to question the goals of our children if we constantly fall short of our own goals. We might only have six min-utes to get a goal accomplished, as there may be no long-term oppor-tunity. Short-term is nothing more than putting some kind of a quan-tier on the goal to complete it in a realistically fast period of time. Long-term is a vision of the future built on a foundation of successful short-term goals. Together, we can strive to reach heights which seemed too high for us. Discussing our goals with others is one of the most successful ways of dealing with achievement and staying focused. Tell people what you are trying to accomplish be-cause it puts a subtle pressure on us to deliver upon our goal. It also helps people point us in the right direction. It is critical we follow through using direct action to take steps to continue forward because we do not want to process items re-peatedly like a hamster on a wheel. Planning is the glue to our goal process. Our goals are brought to conclusion through thoughtful processes. Remember, although we have to be successful at what we create, we also want to chal-lenge ourselves to be better than our current selves. It is important we set short and long-term goals which challenge us. I have found that what stops most people from achieving success is their inability to change and try new endeav-ors. Goals force us to stretch and to achieve in areas where we have not yet been successful, may be uncomfortable, or we have not at-tempted to penetrate in the past. We have to put in the effort to plan, to look at short-term and long-term goals, measure and have the ability to change or pivot.A Team is a Force of One So much has been written about goal setting and how critical it is for organizations and individuals to
set goals, yet rarely are we clear on how to implement or communicate the goal process. As I discussed before, visualiza-tion is critical in goal planning. The process is easier than you think. With the help of the exercises in this book, identify and build on your strengths, both personally and professionally. You will then able to project how things will look in the future based on those same strengths. It is not necessary to abandon your current delivery sys-tem, but merely expand upon it. Based on your current planning and goal-setting methods, you can proj-ect what the environment will look like in the future. If people do not believe in the dream and vision of the company, they will not follow the goal-setting process in the future. To combat apathy within the company, leader-ship must give people the chance to debate and discuss the vision. This process will help them to sup-port the company’s entrepreneurial spirit because they were involved in the goal planning process and can attach themselves to leadership’s vision and dream. As they watch leadership planning well into the future, they may feel compelled to plan for their own futures by creat-ing individual goals. I have found few individuals can really plan for the future and build their own perpetuation plans. Many speak of it, but few can truly deliv-er a solid functional plan. Part of the planning process and part of the goal-setting environment is to decide early on whom you will col-laborate with to accomplish your tasks. At our organization, we have colleagues who are driven and dedicated. Even though they may lack the overall picture of the entire company, they know the goals and Available on Amazon
leader’s vision, so can focus on their particular area of expertise. Without them, the delivery system would fail, but with them change and creativity is common and cherished. Many people are surprised when they fail at accom-plishing goals or fail to achieve their level of goal-setting processes because there are some external or internal reasons which caused the process to break down. They may have relied solely on their ability and instinct which may be sufcient in a short-term goal process, but inappropriate for the long-term. Certainly, as we get older, we real-ize the need to have creative talent around us in order to support our long-range planning process. If not, it’s no different than being on a construction site and having the most high-powered equipment tun-nel trenches that then collapse. The tunneling process goes very quick-ly, but when the machinery stops and you turn around, you notice everything disintegrated because no one had been laying pipe and back-lling the ditch. Conclusion: we realize planning and goal set-ting go hand in hand. Supporting Those who Support You Where can you nd the peo-ple to ll your team? By getting to know the people with whom you work. If as a leader you hold your-self above everyone else and are too far removed from them, you will miss nding emerging leaders.Take Kim, who worked closely with me on the Roots of Leadership Podcast. When I met her she was
the receptionist at Marsh & McLen-nan Northeast. If I’d ignored her as insignicant to my responsibilities, I never would have discovered her talent and passion for writing. She now works in the creative relations department and does a remarkable job with the podcast. Or Caryn Ojeda, when I met Caryn, she was doing project work for us on seminar systems and now she is the producer of the Roots of Leadership Podcast and helping with branding for individuals and companies. She is fantastic at what she does. Each of these women support-ed me and in turn, I support them in their careers. I would not have known what they were capable of, what they wanted to do, and what was possible, if I had walked past them every day with my nose in the air because my ego says, “I’m the all-important CEO.” No. My job as CEO is to bring the right resourc-es into the organization to help it grow, to coach the people I am responsible for, and motivate ev-eryone to be the best they can be every day. When I am doing my job correctly, I nd the people whom I need on teams throughout the company to support the long-term goals. Success does not come from one individual doing everything or dictating what is to be done. It comes when everyone passionately makes the effort to move together as one toward set goals. As a result of my consistently supporting my teams, nurturing, and working with them, there has always more than one person who can step into my position when I vacate it. I believe that when you build a strong, pas-sionate team, it should work this way. Promotion from within could not have happened if I had walled myself off in an ivory tower and had not supported and collaborated with the people who make up my teams.Help Make APeeling BetterClick Peel to take a quick Survey
Is Your Next Step, the Right Step? Who are the people you sur-round yourself with? Who are the people who support you, who can help you plan your next step and tie it back to your Personal Strate-gic Plan? Do you have a Personal Board of Directors? Did you do the work and create the list of those whom you want to sit on your board? Were there names you for-got to add? Go back to your list, rm it up, and ask them to help you write your Personal Strategic Plan and hold you accountable to your goals.A Living Document I wrote my rst book, Creating Reality, almost 20 years ago and when I reread it now, much of the perspective is not the same, be-cause the passion, the goals, the dreams, and the aspirations have been changed. The Personal Stra-tegic Plan which I’m asking you to build is a living document that will continue to evolve as you do. As you become more courageous and condent, as you begin to surround yourself with people who think the same way, your life will change. You have what it takes to do this.You do not have to be in the front to lead. You can be in any position to lead. You can lead from the rear. I’ve met people of all ages who have the power, the energy, the mindset, the tenacity, and the focus to achieve. In my life, every time I tried something new, I’ve encountered people who believed it couldn’t be done. People close to me said I couldn’t go from working construc-tion to an ofce. Then when I was working in the insurance business and I started to write books, people said I couldn’t do that. Every time I took on a new venture that looked Check it out for free in SeptemberJoin the APeeling Community
to be outside of where others be-lieved I should be, I met detractors, as you will, but they don’t matter. What matters is how you see your-self, the dreams you have, and the people you surround yourself with. Who will support you? What Moments will You Make?Think about your day, your week, your month, your year? What mo-ments are you seeking to create? Make as many moments and op-portunities for yourself, those you love, and those your serve.What Seems Impossible to Achieve? As you put your strategic plan into action, as you connect it to a goal and objective, an action and a strategy, as you assign times and structure, and as you select people who will help you, what you be-lieved is impossible, will become reality.Anthony C Gruppo is the CEO of Marsh Commercial in the UK, a speaker, author, and a mentor. This has been an excerpt of his book the Pushers of the Possible.Published!
Pushers of the PossibleAvailable on AmazonPublished!Anthony C. Gruppo, CEO of Marsh Commercial, UK, talks to business leaders who started out with a dream and the determination to build successful companies by Pushing the Possible in both life and business. Join Anthony and his guests as they share their stories, the advice they received from some of the greats, and how they Pushed the Possible in their lives. Buy it Today
I read ction to nd inspiration in life and how to persevere through my struggles. The genres I go to are dark lled with crime and violence My favourite characters are awed, some so awed they’d be considered evil.The writer puts the heroes into the worst of situations with insurmount-able odds and powerful villains. The plots demand personal sacrice to obtain redemption & save others, even if it’s at the cost of their own livesWhat can I possibly learn from stories like these?• Redemption & change are possible• Struggle is nite & necessary• To not give up no matter the odds• To nd resources when options limited• Find Happiness in the moment• Loyalty matters• Actions make a difference• There is always a solution• Fight for the benet of others• What we do has consequences• Take responsibility for our past acts• To work hard• To dig deep inside for strength• Can’t do it all on our own• Teamwork makes anything possible• Anyone can have supportive friendsConnect with me on LinkedIn
Was there ever a time when it was simple to be a woman in your 40s? Was it easier back in the day when men were men and women were women and everyone knew their place? I doubt that made it any simpler. At least I hope it didn’t because if their lives were simpler, better, more productive than ours are to-day, what was the point of strug-gling for feminism and equality? It doesn’t always feel like it made women’s lives better. It feels like more pressure, more stress, and more responsibilities. It also feels like something is missing. Like this can’t be all there is to life? Like it’s all one big revolv-ing wheel that goes nowhere. For instance every morning at our house is exactly the same:“Mom where’s my shirts?” “Shirts? In your closet?”“No.”“Folded in a basket?”“No.”“Damn. Are you sure?”“Ya. Never mind I found them.”“Where”“Wet and stinky in the washing ma-chine. When did you wash them?”I try to think. I can’t really remem-ber when I did. “Uhm. Do you have a dirty one that you can wear?” Sending my daughter to school in dirty clothes, what would my mother say? Thing is I know exactly what she’d say, she told me just last week.“You just need to do things during work breaks, you work from home how hard can it be to stop, take a break, switch out the laundry, do a load of dishes and sweep the oor then go back to work?” It is a good question. I generally don’t take breaks though and if I do I’m surng the net or checking my social media. I don’t really think to do the laundry. Hence my daughter yelling at me about how hard done by she is because she has to wear a shirt she already wore to school. Heaven help us what will the kids think? What will her teachers This is 40?By Shannon PeelThe Novel #ThatsLife was written as a serial series. Each Issue of APeeling will include a chapter for you to enjoy.
think? Will they call social services if her shirt gets dirty enough? My husband comes down to save the day. He does this a lot. He’d grabbed a couple of clean shirts, that she doesn’t like, out of her dresser, walked into the kitchen and said,“Your choice the dirty one, one of these, a smelly one, or you could just go in your bra. Up to you.” I choke on my coffee. ‘And if she’d chosen to go in her bra, then what?’ She doesn’t. She just says Daaaad in that oh you’re so em-barrassing way teen girls have and grabbed a clean one out of his hand. “I’ll go run the load in the washer, pour me a cup of coffee for when I get back.” He says and disappears into the laundry room. My gawd I can’t even imagine what my great-grandmother did before washing machines were in-vented. I turn, pour my husband a cup of coffee, add two teaspoons of sugar and pop a bagel into the toaster for his breakfast. I’ve lled the dishwasher and am just turning it on when I feel his strong arms wrap around me from behind and he kisses my neck. I lean into him. It feels so - normal. “Yuck.” Our 10-year-old son’s voice in-terrupts us and I am twirled around to face my husband who kisses me, while our son makes fake gagging noises. The kiss is just a kiss, normal.
“Your coffee kind sir.” “Sugar?” I look at him, shake my head, and turn to butter his bagel. “Gus & Rose’s place Sunday after-noon?” He asks. I just nod. “Girls’ night after?” I nod again. “And I’m stuck babysitting?” “Parenting dear. It’s called parent-ing when the kids are yours.” “Are you sure they’re mine.”“Positive.” That’s a typical morning. Every day it’s the same. A chore I forgot to do, my husband swooping in to x things, my kids needing some-thing or disapproving of something I did or didn’t do. Each day is pretty much the same, chores, kids, work, bed. It’s the same thing. Perfectly the same. Perfect. The perfect life. I am 40 years old. I have a won-derful loving husband, two well adjusted kids, a gorgeous home in a suburban neighbourhood, and a career. I have a good life. And I feel like I am missing something, like I’ve forgotten something, done something wrong. Did my mother feel this way? Did my grandmother? Did my great-grandmother? Did my grandmother ever forget to switch over the wash and have to wash the load two more times before it made it into the dryer? Did she own a dryer? Did she have to run her kids around from one activity to the other, help them with homework more advanced than when she’d gone to school? Did she feel the pressure of friends, family and society to be perfect? Always feeling judged? Did she ever look at her life and wonder if she made the right choices? Will it be different when my daughter is 40? By then everyone will probably just swallow a pill and say, “That’s dinner.” So, if wom-en have more time because they don’t have to cook, will life be any different? Or will my daughter be looking at 40 saying I think I forgot to do something. Will she have re-grets? I hope not. I hope she knows what she wants and can be satised, happy, and in love. Five Women Navigating Life in the 21st Century.
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The rst part of writing a novel is guring out what it’s about. The next step is to gure out whom the story is about. Characters tell the story, are the reason people con-nect with it, and want to continue to read it. Whether your story has one character, like Tom Hanks in ‘Cast Away,’ or a group of people, like the gang in ‘Friends,’ success is measured by the emotional con-nection the audience has with the characters. The more authentic the character’s responses, emotions, and actions, the more the reader will connect with the whole story.Whom is #ThatsLife About?Charlie - The Jaded one – The one who is bitter about menRose - The Romantic one – The one who is happily marriedLindsay - The Fun one – The one who parties and has lots of menSophie - The Abused one – The one who is lost and scaredJustine - The Perfect one - The one who battles depression Character’s Voice To write really good characters you have to know how they will react to situations. If my charac-ters got together at Rose’s place to watch the movie, an Ofcer and a Gentleman, would they all experi-ence the same thing? Let’s nd out.The Question What did you think about the last scene in the movie, ‘An Ofcer and a Gentleman?’Sophie’s Answer The ending? Oh well. It was romantic I guess. I mean. There she is working in a dead end job, un-happy, and knowing that’s all she has to look forward to. Depressing. I guess. She’s young and there will be other men, other classes of of-cers, but she is hurt because he didn’t want her, he was gonna leave her behind. Then he walked in and saved her, took her away, and ev-eryone cheered. Heck, I cheered even though I knew it was gonna happen. Why is it wrong to want that? I mean. I want a man to come save me from my life, sweep me off my feet and carry me away to a #ThatsLife Charactersby Shannon Peel
safer one. Make life easier. Happi-er. But everyone tells me it’s wrong to want that. They tell me, “I won’t nd a good guy if I need one to save me.” I’m beginning to believe them. No man wants a woman as messed up as me. I can’t blame them.Rose’s Answer I just love the classic love stories they are so romantic. Here she was working away thinking that he’d abandoned her and then he comes in, all dressed up in his white uni-form looking so handsome, to sur-prise her like that. Pick her up in front of all her co-workers and car-ry her away into the sunset to live happily ever after. What a story. I cried. You know, Gus is romantic like that. Once, before the kids, he came to my workplace with a big bouquet of owers. He’d already arranged ev-erything with my boss, a week off, can you imagine. Gus had planned everything, packed my suitcase and took me to Hawaii for our rst wed-ding anniversary. It was so roman-tic. Just like him. I love him Lindsay’s Answer Well a man in uniform is so sexy. When he walked in, all condent in his uniform looking hot, I thought yummy. Then when he grabbed her head and just took a kiss from her like that, wowza. The rest was too tame though. Way too censored in my opinion, but what can you ex-pect from the 80s. Come on, the scene needed more heat. I love a man who takes what he wants, just comes and grabs a woman all cave-man like and she melts into him with passion, heat, then they fu** hard. That’s what that scene need-ed. Now that would have been something to clap for.Charlie’s Answer The whole movie was Bull shi**. Men don’t give two craps about saving some poor little woman from her life and what a pathetic thing to want. Clapping because he’d showed up and stole her away from what? Come on men don’t do that sh**. They just want someone to cook for ’em and fu** em. They don’t want to be bothered with all that touchy feely stuff.Know Your Client Like an Author Knows Thier Heroes
OK so some of them are into the whole romance thing, like my brother in law Gus. But Gus and guys like him are so, I don’t know. Gus is a good guy, a nice guy, a family guy. Those guys are all mar-ried to woman like my sister Rose. Strong, independent, career women like me, we attract selsh guys who are focused on their ca-reers as much as we are focused on ours. Who has time for all that ro-mantic stuff. I just don’t trust it. The only reason they are doing it is to get laid, so why bother it’s not real.Justine’s Answer: I don’t know. It was a Holly-wood ending all romantic and stuff. My husband Gary saves me from my mistakes all the time and he’s perfect. I mean he must be every woman who knows him tells me how jealous of me they are. Now that he’s saved her, how is she go-ing to be able to live up to that? The movie is just a farytale, it’s not real. Once the feelings from such a romantic gesture are gone, what’s left? What’s the point? How could they keep that feeling?
What can ction teach about leadership and team building? Some leadership principles explored by Orson Scott Card in Ender’s Game Good ction puts their characters into difcult unreal situa-tions to authentically behave in a real world way. When done right, readers can learn solu-tions from a ctional story for real world problems Or we can think about the solutions presented to deter-mine if we think they are correct or not and how we’d do it dif-ferently. Some of the lessons from Ender’s Game:a) Thinking we under-stand everything and not listening to others makes us the worst member of the teamb) Need to understand the end game. What we are working to-wards and whyc) Controlling our emo-tions and our actionsd) Acting decisively when action is requirede) How to help team members develop thinking skills There is lots to learn from when we read stories of all types What are some stories that teach us about work, life, and leadership Sure this is a YA novel, but I am get-ting more out of it now than I did when I was younger and just en-joying the story Orson Scott Card wrote the book before its publish date in Jan-uary 1985. The tech-nology he wrote about didn’t come to fruition for another 5-15 years in our day to day world Think about what’s possible.
Peter’sReading ListDitch The Act demonstrates how revealing yourfailures and weaknesses is an essential ele-ment to building and sustaining a viral personalbrand to help propel your relationships, yourcareer, and/or your business.Why is it we are so caught up in allocating hu-man beings with titles, labels and outdatedmeasurements? Why have we subjected hu-mans to the performance review process frombirth when it is a soul-destroying activity thatsucks the motivation out of the very humanswho you are looking to inspire?Believership is a higher form of leadership, ig-niting purpose and the power of many movingin the same direction. While leadership forgesa path, Believership becomes a paved roadfor many to travel together. Believership is allabout bringing the true self to leadership andall employees in order to create value ratherthan extract value, drawing out the collectiveeffort of the team ...Peter Goral is a supportive marketing professional I connected with onLinkedIn. I asked him which books I should add to this issue’s reading listand he suggested the following. Click the book to purchase on Amazon.
Bronte Sisters, Charlotte, Emily, and Anne. I chose the sisters because my favourite novel is Jane Eyre. I iden-tied with the character’s indepen-dence, strength, and her disconnec-tion to the world around her. I have reread this book so often I almost know it by heart. Why include all the sisters? They all wrote books, which inuenced the genre and proved that women could write successful novels in a male dominated world. Charlotte Bronte - Jane Eyre was a classic I loved reading in my aca-demic years”Maya Angelou Her ability to be open and bare her soul in her writing without con-cern of being judged, criticized or ridiculed makes her a strong, amazing, and inuential woman in literature. She changed a genre and made it better with her work. She is credited with inspiring so many Female authors of all races. Her strength, honesty, and determina-tion are inspiring. She inspires me to be more honest, more open, and to bare my soul in my writing.J.K. Rowling I have to admit I haven’t read all the books, nor have a seen all the movies. I am adding her because she changed the way publishing houses looked at both Young Adult writers and Female authors ability to make money. Her success inspires others to follow their dreams. Like her, life hit me hard, her ability to pick herself back up and focus on her dream inspires me to overcome my own challenges in life.Shannon’s List of Female Authors
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